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The Rio Habitat System
We take a holistic systems approach to vivarium design and management, offering innovative products and materials that work in tandem with one another for the longterm success and enjoyment of your vivariums. Our approach to creating active water features is no different: the RIO itself is just one piece of a larger approach to the longterm management of water, weight and organics within a captive ecosystem.
Once plants root into the substrate, they are constantly pulling nutrients from the water water column, acting as a biological/veggie filter. One of the biggest sources of decomposing organics in vivariums is generally from organic-based substrates, which we have replaced with a synthetic EcoWeb substrate layer. Through additions of fresh water – either by automated misting or manually topping off the vivarium's trough – fresh water is regularly being introduced into the system. The trough's outflow bulkhead diverts any potential overflow out of the tank and into your sump/reservoir to prevent flooding, should there be too much water added or a misting timer goes haywire.
Lightweight pumice stone allows you to create a naturalistic ecosystem using a natural material without adding the immense weight of traditional rock.
When all of these components are in place, the only organics will be frog/animal waste and uneaten feeder insects, which is pretty minimal. In systems where organics and nutrients are limited, plants will compete to utilize those pretty rapidly, creating a system that more closely mimics actual rainforest ecology and nutrient flows/dynamics.